A Day in the Life of Standing at Work with Kit Perkins, CEO of Ergodriven

A Day in the Life of Standing at Work with Kit Perkins, CEO of Ergodriven

by Ellen O'Hearn January 14, 2016

I recently had the opportunity to interview Kit Perkins, the CEO of Ergodriven. We have been loving his TOPO anti-fatigue mat for standing desks here at Stand Steady, and I was curious what was in the plans for the upcoming year. And I wanted to know more about Kit's healthy lifestyle! Ever since the team saw their informative and entertaining video from last year, featuring Kit and Ryan Feeley running barefoot through nature and climbing trees, we have been huge fans of the TOPO mat and the founders.

Here's a photo of Ellen using Kit's TOPO Mat today:

EO – Ellen O’Hearn, Creative Director, Stand Steady

KP – Kit Perkins, CEO, Ergodriven

EO: What inspired you to start ErgoDriven?

KP: We started Ergodriven because we wanted our environment to drive us to be better. It was clear to us that in so many ways, our modern environments make us worse, because these environments are so poorly aligned with human design. At the intersection between technology and our interest in human health and performance, there is just so much opportunity to design environments that almost force humans within them to be awesome.

EO: Tell me about your biggest achievement with this business?

KP: Ergodriven’s biggest achievement so far has been Topo, the first anti-fatigue mat designed specifically for standing desks. Topo is a great start to applying our ideology - that environments should drive performance and health - literally from the ground up. It’s an anti-fatigue mat that makes standing desk users better, and it does it in the simplest, most elegant way possible. It does it simply by not being flat, just like nature is not flat. And that means more movement and healthier standing, without you even having to think about, because now the environment is so well-thought out that it handles it for you. 

EO: What other ergonomic products do you personally use? (I have a gel mousepad I love!)

KP: I’m a huge fan of the Anker Vertical Mouse recommended so highly by QuittingSitting.com. It’s just a no brainer to get your shoulder externally rotated by getting that mouse hand vertical. 

EO: How will you look to improve the TOPO mat in the coming year?

KP: The biggest thing we can do to improve Topo in 2016 is to get Topo under more desks, helping better the standing of more standing desk users. So that’s exactly what we’ll do, and that’s definitely where Topo is headed. Certainly, even when we were refining the design with dozens of prototypes, we were already aware that Topo would be the new standard - or really, the first standard - to be used by standing desk users who care about their health and performance. And we’ve seen that mindset shared by so many people, more all the time, who really do care. The number one thing we hear in reviews is how much our awesome users love their Topos and how much better they feel. The second thing we always hear is that Topo should be the standard for standing desks - that it should be the mat under every single standing desk. 

EO: What influencers influence you?

KP: Katy Bowman is a huge one for us - she’s absolutely fantastic. The way she approaches the human body is just incredible. Beyond that, we’ve been inspired by someone on just about every aspect of the business. It’s really wonderful how many people put out really great information, totally free. It’s a great time to learn anything new, because knowledge is so freely available from so many people who can so easily share their experiences and wisdom thanks to the internet. 

EO: What other healthy activities do you do, other than standing at work?

KP: We’re always doing something! We have a really good mix here. Always morning walks, first thing every day. Some CrossFit-type workouts, mountain biking and road cycling, and plenty of camping/hiking/backpacking in the summers especially. Personally, I play a lot of hockey as well.

EO: Do you go to the Churchill Club? I went regularly in 1997-2000.

KP: I will now! I can’t believe I had never heard of it. Thanks for the tip!

EO: Is there grocery store in Cupertino now? There wasn’t when I lived there in the late 90s.

KP: There is. We had a Lucky for a long time, but that’s gone now, usurped by one of the biggest Whole Foods stores in the country!

EO: What did you do yesterday?

KP: Morning walk

Built today’s hit list ~ typically 1 big thing and 2 medium things (small stuff stays on a running list that I hit when I have free time)

Quick email triage

Concentrated work

20-minute CrossFit-style workout

Lunch

Concentrated work

Inbox clearing

Pick-up hockey

Dinner

Concentrated work

Reading

Sleep

EO: What did you eat for breakfast today?

KP: Nothing! I only eat breakfast ~10 days / year, when something really weird is going on. I typically eat “Lunch” around 1:30pm and “Dinner” between 6:30pm and 11pm. What I’m eating typically depends quite a bit on my activity for the day. I generally try to eat the majority of my intake within an hour or so after a workout.

EO: Thanks so much! 

KP: Thank you! This was fun :)

 The TOPO is the first mat designed specifically for standing desks. It reduces fatigue, and reduces joint pain, because it keeps you moving across the bumpy surface, similar to nature. The TOPO helps you stand longer and more comfortably. You can find TOPO here: on Amazon, and at Ergo Depot.

 

-Ellen O'Hearn




Ellen O'Hearn
Ellen O'Hearn

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Stand Steady Product Comparison Chart
We pride ourselves on our wide array of standing desks and standing desk converters.
We're confident that we can offer a solution for your workspace; please refer to the chart below to find your perfect fit!

Full Sized Standing Desks

Product name

Tranzendesk Standing Desk - 55 inch

Tranzendesk Dual Level  - 47 inch

Joy Desk - 47 inch

Joy Desk - Large Glass - 43 inch

Joy Desk - Compact Glass - 31 inch

How it Works Crank Crank Electric Electric Static (No adjustments needed!)
Static (No adjustments needed!)
Static (No adjustments needed!)

 Color

Black desktop

Silver legs OR black legs

(Black desktop regardless of leg color)

Black

Black desktop

Black legs with chrome detailing

Black desktop

Black legs

Maple veneer desktop

Cream legs

Glass top with wood print design

White legs

Glass top with rainbow wood print design

Black legs

Desktop Size

55" x 23.5"
47" x 27"
55" x 27.75" 47.25" x 23.75" 47.25" x 23.75" 43.25" x 23.5" 31.25" x 18.5"

Footprint 

55" x 24"
36.5"x 27"
57" x 23"
35.75" x 23" 46" x 23" 43" x 23" 31" x 15.5"

 Levels

1
2
1 + drop-down keyboard tray 1 2 1 1

 Monitor Capacity

2 monitors + laptop
2 monitors + laptop
2 monitors + laptop
2 monitors + laptop
2 monitors + laptop
2 monitors + laptop
1 monitor or laptop

 Weight Limit

85 lbs max load
85 lbs max load
80 lbs max load
75 lbs max load 60 lbs max load 60 lbs max load 60 lbs max load
 

Standing Desk Converters: Sit/Stand

One Level: X-Elite Series

Product name

X-Elite Pro Standing Desk Converter

X-Elite Pro XL 36" Standing Desk Converter

X-Elite Pro Glide

X-Elite Pro Corner

How it Works Air cylinder lift
Air cylinder lift
Air cylinder lift
Air cylinder lift

 Color

Choose from Black, Cherry, Maple, or White
Black
Black Black

Desktop Size

28" x 20"
36" x 24"
31" x 21" 39.25" x 18"

Footprint 

16.8" x 24.5"
24.25" x 16.5"
24" x 19" 23.5" x 16.25"

 Levels

1
1
1 1

 Monitor Capacity

1 monitor + laptop
2 monitors or 1 monitor + laptop
1 monitor + laptop 2 monitors or 1 monitors + laptop

 Weight Limit

20 lbs max load
20 lbs max load
20 lbs max load
20 lbs max load
 

Two Level: FlexPro Series

 Product Name
How it Works
Air cylinder lift
Air cylinder lift
Pump lift with locking levers
Electric lift
Air cylinder lift
Electric lift
Tension-controlled gas spring lift
Color
Black
Black
Black
Black
Black
Black
Black
Desktop Size
2 sizes! Choose from 32" & 37"

32" x  16"
37" x 16"

3 7.5" x 17.5"
31.5" x 24.5"

 

3 sizes! Choose from 32", 36", & 40"

32" x 25.5"
36" x 25.5"
40" x 25.5"

2 sizes! Choose from 32" & 36"

32" x 25.5"
36" x 25.5"

37" x 15.75" 

32" x 25.5" 

Footprint
30" x 16"
(both models)
30" x 16"
27.5" x 24.5"
32" x 23.5"
36" x 23.5"
40" x 23.5"
32" x 23.5"
36" x 23.5"
30" x 16"
23.5" x 19.5"
Levels
2
2 2 2 2
2
2
Monitor Capacity
32": 1 monitor + laptop
37": 2 monitors
2 monitors or 1 monitor + laptop
1 monitor + laptop
32": 1 monitor + laptop
36": 2 monitors
40": 2 monitors + laptop
32": 1 monitor + laptop
36": 2 monitors
2 monitors or 1 monitor + laptop
2 monitors or 1 monitor + laptop
Weight Limit
35 lbs max load
35 lbs max
30 lbs max load
25 lbs max load
25 lbs max load
44 lbs max load
40 lbs max load

Monitor Mount Converters: Techtonic Series

 Product Name

Techtonic Electric Dual Monitor Mount

Techtonic Electric Triple Monitor Mount

How it Works
Electric lift
Electric lift
Color
Black
Black
Desktop Size
TABLETOP DIMENSIONS: 33" x 14"
KEYBOARD TRAY DIMENSIONS: 34" x 18"
TABLETOP DIMENSIONS: 33" x 14"
KEYBOARD TRAY DIMENSIONS: 34" x 18"
Footprint
31.25" x 20"
31.25" x 20"
Levels
3 3
Max Monitor Size
31.5" widescreen 19" widescreen
Weight Limit
60 lbs
60 lbs

Space Savers: UpTrak Series

Product Name

UpTrak Standing Desk / Adjustable Stand Up Desk

UpTrak Metro Standing Desk & Bonus Keyboard Tray

How it Works Easy-to-use locking levers Spring-assisted lift
Color
Choose from Black or Cherry
Choose from Black, Cherry, or Shimmer
Desktop Size
24" x 20"

Keyboard level: 18.6" x 7.75"

Monitor level: 23.74" x 16"

Footprint

18" x 15"

15.75" x 14.1"
Levels 1 2
Monitor Capacity 1 1
Weight Limit 25 lbs max load
25 lbs max load

 

Standing Desk Converters: Stand Only

Stand Steady Series 

Product
Name
 

Original Stand Steady
Standing Desk (MEDIUM)

Original Folding Desk Converter

Executive Folding Desk Converter

Magic Shelf Multifunctional Desk Converter

Color Black Black Black Blue Black Black White

Desktop Size

24" x 20"
32" x 22" 48" x 24" 19.75" x 11" 23.5" x 20" 31.5" x 23.5"

LARGER TABLE: 24.25" x 11.75"

SMALLER TABLE: 24" x 11.75"

Footprint 18" x 15" 28" x 19" 42 x 21" 20" x 10.5" 18.5" x 13" 26" x 16.5"

LARGER TABLE: 24.25" x 11.75"

SMALLER TABLE: 24" x 11.75"

(Footprint of combined pieces varies based on setup)
Levels 1 1 1 1 1 1 2
Monitor Capacity 1 2 1 monitor + laptop Laptop 1 2 Laptop
Weight Limit 75 lbs max load
75 lbs max load
75 lbs max load
16.5 lbs max load
75 lbs max load
75 lbs max load
25 lbs max load